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Business News Wed, 17 Jun 2015

‘Follow smart businesses’

President and Chairman of Groupe Nduom (GN), Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, has admonished government to “follow the habits of smart business people” in administering the country.

“Smart business people know that when they are in trouble, they “humble” themselves, they take the bitter pill, discipline themselves, cut cost and go to market with enthusiasm to sell their best products,” Dr. Nduom wrote on his Facebook wall.

The advice follows on the heels of an announcement by the European Union (EU) to resume budgetary support to Ghana.

Ghana’s economy is going through one of its trying moments due largely to what the government blames on shortfall in revenue occasioned by drop in prices of major exports like gold, cocoa and crude oil, a never ending electricity power crisis which is collapsing businesses, a depreciating currency on the exchange market, ballooning wage bill, balance of payment deficit, huge budget deficit among others.

And to halt the continued slide of the Cedi as well as deal with balance of payment challenges the government early this year went into an International Monetary Fund (IMF) program.

The impact of that decision is yet to be felt in the economy. With the EU reinstating its budget support to Ghana, it is expected to somewhat ease pressure on the government.

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Dr. Nduom advised the government to be smart and act in the best interest of Ghanaians, “especially now that it’s clear, known and admitted that we are in a tough economy and money is scarce.”

He further urged officials of the government to be humble and drop projects and expenditure that do not fall in the “need” category.

Many have faulted government for failing to ensure fiscal prudence as it has consistently over spent what it budgeted for.

That situation is said to have also contributed to the country’s present economic woes.

Dr. Nduom believes that one of the remedial actions government can take to strengthen the economy is to take a single-minded approach to supporting Ghanaian businesses with tax incentives, low cost money and the state’s purchasing power.

He alluded to the fact that when Ghanaian businesses become big and profitable, they would employ more people, pay more taxes to fund social infrastructure and bring the excitement needed to generate greater prosperity for the people.

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He also touched on extreme partisanship and feared politics of the extreme partisan nature, designed to benefit only a select few of the people, would destroy anything home-grown.

He indicated that “in many homes in Ghana you will find a combination of PPP, National Democratic Congress (NDC), New Patriotic Party (NPP), People’s National Convention (PNC), Convention People’s Party (CPP), etc.,” emphasising “Money does not wear political colours.”

EU on Friday, June 12, 2015 said it would resume budget support of 161.38 million Euros ($181.84 million) to Ghana after suspending aid in 2013.

According to an official of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), “countries at high-risk distress like Ghana, reducing the debt burden and associated vulnerability is a priority so the authorities have to be very selective with regard to new non-concessional borrowing since that can escalate.”

Source: Today Newspaper